Friday, February 11, 2011

New ObamaCare Regulations Defy Court, ALG Urges States to Take Immediate Action

February 11th, 2011, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson today urged Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, as well as the 26 co-plaintiff states, to take immediate action against the implementation of new regulatory processes forbidden by Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling:

“Despite the ruling of a federal court striking down the bill in its entirety, the Obama Administration has continued with the regulatory implementation of the health care takeover. Instead of the rule of law, we now have the rule of Obama.

“Today, published in the Federal Register, the Obama Administration has introduced a new regulation affecting student health plans. The problem is that the executive branch has no power to implement regulations based on voided legislation. These actions are barred by Judge Vinson’s ruling. The Obama Administration has not even taken the basic step asking the courts for a stay of that decision.
“This lawlessness must not stand. Without a stay or being overturned, the Administration must follow Judge Vinson’s decision.

“It is now evident that the Department of Health and Human Service is taking further steps to execute the law expressly forbidden by Judge Vinson’s ruling. Obama has called the states’ bluff by continuing with implementation. If the states are serious in their opposition to ObamaCare, they must take immediate action.”
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Will Republicans Keep Their Pledge?

By Robert Romano
Trust but verify. That is Americans for Limited Government (ALG) President Bill Wilson’s advice to the American people concerning House Republicans’ latest promise to attach $100 billion of cuts to an upcoming vote on the budget continuing resolution. The current resolution expires March 4th.

“The American people need to verify that current spending levels will actually be cut by $100 billion. No gimmicks,” Wilson said after House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers promised to go back to work on the bill.

Chairman Rogers’ first proposal only contained $35 billion in cuts from current spending levels, falling way short of the House Republicans’ Pledge to America. Last year, they promised to “roll back government spending to pre-stimulus, pre-bailout levels, saving us at least $100 billion in the first year alone and putting us on a path to balance the budget and pay down the debt.”

Wilson explained, “It does not matter what Barack Obama proposed for Fiscal Year 2011, because his budget was never adopted.” Previously, the GOP was saying that it was pegging its proposed cuts to the Obama budget baseline.

Get full story here.

The Riddle of the Sphinx

ALG Editor's Note: William Warren's award-winning cartoons published at are a free service of ALG News Bureau. They may be reused and redistributed free of charge.
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How Attempts to Save Penguins Don't Really Save Penguins or the American Worker

Video by Frank McCaffrey
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Progressives Are Arrogant


By Adam Bitely

Progressivism is all about arrogance. And that arrogance manifests itself in the various policy prescriptions that progressive politicians routinely profess from their high government offices in Washington, D.C.

These progressive bureaucrats and politicians in Washington love telling people how to do things. They think up regulations all day long to try and direct your life in the direction that they see fit.

Just look at Michelle Obama. She regularly preaches to all Americans the type of diet everyone should maintain. Of course, she doesn’t have to follow her own recommended diet, but the rest of us should. How does she make this so? She gets a bill passed that requires the FDA to regulate our meals more.
Progressives are also naturally inclined to be always worried about myths and magic. Need an example? Net neutrality.
Get full story here.

Antoine Fuqua Prepares Tupac Biopic

Thug life headed for screen

Antoine Fuqua Prepares Tupac Biopic
He was once attached to Notorious, the film about the life of Biggie Smalls, but the rap biopic Antoine Fuqua finally brings to the screen will be on Tupac Shakur: from the other side of the East Coast/West Coast rivalry.

Tupac, as if you need telling, was a hip-hop superstar, with albums like Me Against the World, All Eyez on Me and The Don Killuminati all achieving multi-platinum status. He was also building an extremely credible acting career with the likes of Juice, Above the Rim and Gridlock'd before his untimely death in a drive-by shooting in 1996.

The case remains unsolved, although various conspiracy theories and accusations regarding Suge Knight, Biggie, Death Row and Bad Boy Records (not to mention the police) continue to fly around. Nick Broomfield's 2002 documentary Biggie & Tupac conducts its own (very revealing) investigation, and 2007's Tupac: Assassination claimed some new information and insights.

Fuqua's film won't concentrate solely on the Death Row years however; it'll also take time to cover Tupac's early life and rise to stardom. Pac's mother Afeni Shakur-Davis is on board as an executive producer, and says, "I am confident that [production company] Morgan Creek will stay true to the common goal we share of depicting Tupac's life in a way that will allow the world to see the authenticity of his artistry, his hopes, and his life goals."

Casting is currently underway, although no frontrunners for the lead have yet been announced. Anthony Mackie played Tupac off-Broadway to some acclaim, but his short turn in Notorious was met with less enthusiasm. That film was also criticized for its bland rags-to-riches approach, but there's every reason to expect that, with the director of Training Day and Brooklyn's Finest at the helm, Tupac will make the most of its subject's eventful life.

The screenplay is by Steve Bagatourian (American Gun) and Stephen J Rivele & Christopher Wilkinson (Ali), and filming in LA, New York, Georgia and Las Vegas is scheduled for early summer.

Morgan Stanley and Citi Were Closer to Brink Than Thought


Big banks like Citigroup and Morgan Stanley, which were battered by the 2008 financial crisis, are once again on solid ground.

But a set of documents, e-mail messages and minutes of crucial regulatory meetings released recently by the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission provide fresh detail about just how close to the brink both firms came.

This week the commission will release another set of documents on its Web site, including an interactive timeline that goes back to the Great Depression. The site will also feature hours of previously unreleased audio recordings of interviews with major players in the crisis, like Joseph Cassano of the American International Group, who was at the center of the credit-default swaps business.

The current documents paint an especially desperate picture of Citigroup, one of the most troubled big banks, which needed several cash infusions from the government during the crisis.

(More here.)

Assange's plea rejected

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange holds an umbrella to shelter from rain as he arrives at Belmarsh Magistrates' Court in London, Friday, Feb. 11, 2011 (AP / Matt Dunham)
A judge on Friday rejected a request by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's lawyers for postponing until March the case in which their client is fighting extradition to Sweden to face allegations of sexual assault brought by two women he met in Stockholm last August.

The postponement was sought on grounds that Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeld's reportedly “hostile'' remarks about the case had created a “toxic atmosphere'' which could damage Mr. Assange's chance of a fair trial if he was extradited.

District Judge Howard Riddle, however, ruled that there was a need for “an element of finality” and said the court would reconvene on February 24 when a verdict is expected.

As the hearing resumed after a two-day recess, Mr. Assange's attorney Geoffrey Robertson claimed that Mr. Reinfeld's remarks showed “complete contempt for the presumption of innocence”.

Enemy no.1

“Mr. Assange is public enemy number one as a result of the prime minister's statement,” he said.
In his remarks, Mr. Reinfeld had criticised Mr. Assange's defence team for its attack on Sweden's legal system .

Mr. Robertson said: “The real evil of this outburst is not that he [Reinfeldt] will have an effect on these proceedings, but in a small country — Sweden has only 9 million people — it has created a toxic atmosphere.”

Clare Montgomery, representing the Swedish government, complained that Mr. Assange and his lawyers had routinely attacked Sweden's legal system, and those who fanned the flames “can't be too surprised when they get burnt” .

Mr. Assange has described the case as politically motivated voicing fear that if he is sent to Sweden he could in turn be handed over to Americans who want to prosecute him for leaking thousands of classified government documents.

Is King Abdullah Dead?

There are persistent rumors that King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has died. As far as I can tell there is little mention of it in the news, and only one article that states it as a fact. AFP reports that the king is in “excellent health”. acknowledges the rumors, but denies their accuracy:

(Dubai) — A source is laying to rest a rumor that the king of Saudi Arabia is dead.

An adviser to a senior member of the ruling family says King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz is alive.

Abdullah has been on the mend in Morocco since January after he had surgery in the U.S. for a blood clot that complicated a slipped disc.

The only article I can find that says Abdullah is dead is from Islam Times . Notice the assertion that the king became upset after an argument with President Obama, and had a heart attack as a result (all spelling errors are in the original):

Saudia Arabia’s King Abdullah Passed Away

Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz passed away yesterday, according to an Islam Times reporter…

Islam Times: Saudi Arabia’s 86-year-old King Abdullah was discharged from a New York City hospital in good health after going through two back operations in December 2010. The king delegated the management of the affairs of the world’s largest oil supplier to his half-brother, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz, during his absence.

King Abdullah talked with Obama about the situation in Egypt over the phone yesterday. Obama and the King got into a heated debate about their opinions of what Hosni Mubarak should do. After the phone call sources stated that King Abdullah was furious and then suffered a sudden heart attack.

Doctors ran to his resuce but were unable to save him. He was pronounced dead, but his death was not reported due to the sensative conditions that exist in the region. The Saudi Arabian government will reject this claim; but the ball is in their court to prove that he is alive.

Hat tip: heroyalwhyness.

CPAC and Dick Cheney: Love and Hate for the Former VP By Stacy

Making a surprise appearance this week at CPAC, Dick Cheney’s popularity with conservatives was made apparent by their enthusiastic applause and chanting. But it wasn’t all love for the former VP, as shouts of “war criminal” and other accusations rang out when the crowd was silenced. Get the full story with pictures and video below!
Dick Cheney CPAC  6

The Conservative Political Action Conference has been embroiled in controversy this year due to the participation of GOProud, a conservative gay-rights group supporting gay marriage and the removal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” But the appearance of the former VP to introduce his old friend, Donald Rumsfeld, brought unity to the rambunctious crowd, if only for a moment.

“A welcome like that is almost enough to make me want to run for office again— but I’m not gonna do it.”
As soon as he managed to silence the crowd at CPAC, Dick Cheney was interrupted by one or more members of the audience shouting “war criminal,” “draft dodger,” and “murdering scum.” Every time a detractor attacked the former VP, the crowd retaliated with a chorus of “USA! USA! USA!”
The Bush-era VP, however, seemed unfazed by the heckling, and continued to give his opinion on the current situation in the U.S. to the crowd.
“The sky is the limit here. I think 2010 will be a phenomenal year. And I think Barack Obama is a one-term president. It’s a remarkable time to be an American and a remarkable time to be a conservative. Good luck.”
The annual conference also saw a promising speech from possible 2012 candidate Donald Trump. The corporate legend received enthusiastic support from the crowd and hinted that he might reveal his intent to run within the next few months. For his sake, let’s hope he can earn more unified support than the former VP has.
What did you think of the former Vice President’s appearance at CPAC? Dick Cheney still obviously suffers from his tarnished image in the Bush administration. Does his reception hint at cracks in the GOP support base? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section! Watch the video and see pictures from the conference below!
Dick Cheney CPAC  5 Dick Cheney CPAC  2 Dick Cheney CPAC  1 Dick Cheney CPAC  3 Dick Cheney CPAC  4 Dick Cheney CPAC  7

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak Finally Steps Down

By Justin Gardner |
They won.
From Bloomberg:
Hosni Mubarak stepped down as president of Egypt and handed power to the military, bowing to the demands of protesters who have occupied central Cairo for the past 18 days demanding an end to his 30-year rule.
“Mubarak has decided to relinquish the office of the presidency,” said Vice President Omar Suleiman in a statement on state television late today. “He has instructed the Supreme Council of the armed forces to take over the affairs of the country.”
Tens of thousands of protesters who crowded into Cairo’s central Tahrir Square after dark greeted the announcement with a roar of delight before dancing, singing and waving the national flag. Outside the presidential palace in Heliopolis, a suburb, cars honked their horns while a crowd of thousands chanted: “The people have toppled the regime.” The resignation came after Egyptians streamed out of Friday prayers vowing to oust Mubarak, 82, after he yesterday defied calls for him to leave for the second time this month.

He could have had a graceful exit, but decided to talk tough publicly and then abdicate privately.

His loss.

Egypt’s gain.